Pulmonary fibrosis is a lung disease that occurs when lung tissue becomes damaged and scarred. This thickened, stiff tissue makes it more difficult for your lungs to work properly. As pulmonary fibrosis worsens, you become progressively more short of breath.
- Shortness of breath, particularly during exercise
- Dry, hacking cough
- Fast, shallow breathing
- Gradual unintended weight loss
- Aching joints and muscles
- Clubbing (widening and rounding) of the tips of the fingers or toes
The lung damage caused by pulmonary fibrosis can't be repaired, but medications and therapies can sometimes help ease symptoms and improve quality of life. For some people, a lung transplant might be appropriate.